h1miah
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How many marks would this be out of 20 ?

Explore how guilt is presented elsewhere in the play. (20 marks)
Guilt is a key theme in Macbeth and is largely responsible for Macbeth’s tyrannous rule and lady Macbeth’s demise and death.
In the beginning Macbeth is presented as “noble” and “brave” after helping to defeat the Norwegian army. At this point of the play Macbeth is free from any guilt even tough he has killed many people in battle, this is because he is protecting his country and serving the king.

After hearing the witch’s predictions, Macbeth’s guilt is such that even the thought of regicide terrifies him. In act 1 scene 3 he says, “whose horrid image unfix my hair” in his soliloquy. Shakespeare uses a soliloquy in order to convey Macbeth’s inner thoughts and motifs, as well emphasising the strong possibility of him heading the journey as he cannot forget the witch’s predictions. In act 1 scene 7 Macbeth’s guilt is finally exploited by lady Macbeth when she says, “was the hope drunk…”.

In act 2 scene 1 Macbeth seem to be recognising that guilt could be creating the illusion of the dagger which he sees before him as he goes to murder Duncan. The “dagger of the mind” is a false creation proceeding from the heat oppressed brain. Moreover, the dagger is a manifestation of Macbeth’s ambition towards wanting to become a king, but also acts as a warning against the guilt that could occur after the murder Duncan.

After the murder of Duncan, guilt immediately takes over Macbeth, this can be seen when he leaves the daggers in Duncan’s chamber and says “I will go no more” to lady Macbeth. Killing the king went against the Divine Rights of Kings”. Kings were seen to be appointed and answerable to God only. Therefore, any attempts to remove the monarch from the throne was seen as sacrilegious.
The extent of Macbeth’s guilt is established trough the motif of blood in act 2 scene 2. The hyperbolic description of all “great Neptune’s ocean washes this blood clean from my hand” and “multitudinous” convey the vastness of the ocean yet is insufficient to wash the blood clean. Macbeth’s guilt at this point is completely juxtaposed to lady Macbeth lack guilt as she says, “a little water clears us of this deed”. In addition, Macbeth is making the ocean “red” with Duncan’s blood, this suggest that instead of cleansing him, the sin is instead becoming the water and spreading, eventually becoming worse. This foreshadows the demise yet to come, as if the is becoming the water and implying that Macbeth’s guilt cannot be cleansed. Moreover, by referring to Neptune and not a catholic god, it implies that Macbeth cannot return to his God after what he has done, therefore relies on a Roman God.

However, Macbeth’s guilt is removed by the witches in the second meeting and gains a sense of invincibility. The ack of guilt is evident in the late murder of Banquo and Macduff’s family. Following the murder of Banquo, the discussion with the murderers, Macbeth has no sense of guilt, just fear based on Fleance escape as he says, “I had else been perfect”.

Moreover, guilt can be seen through the pattern of speech in the play, as progression of guilt consumes Lady Macbeths sanity and wellbeing. Throughout the play lady Macbeth’s speech changes. From act 1 scene 5 lady Macbeth’s speech is that of a great lady, her speeches are in blank verse with strong rhythm of iambic pentameter which declares her sense of purpose and authority. However, by act 5 scene 1 lady Macbeth’s speech deteriorates to prose, which is choppy and abrupt, even descending into the rhyme of “Fife” and “wife”. Shakespeare writing reflect what it means to break down, even her language is breaking down because guilt of the sin is removing her ability to communicate.

In addition, Shakespeare typifies nobility of ac character through their speech, as noble characters usually speak in blank verse. Therefore, lady Macbeth’s deteriorating speech could imply the destruction of her title and reputation. Shakespeare message may be the heavy consequences surrounding regicide and the chain of being, as killing the king in the Jacobean Era was the worst sin to be committed.

Lastly lady Macbeth’s sleepwalking scene shows the way which guilt has overtaken her. There is an enormous contrast between her needing light by her side now and yet she said “come thick night” in act 1 scene 5. In addition, there is a contrast between her needing to get the “damned spot” out with “a little water clear us of his deed”. Lady Macbeths guilt at the end of the play is directly comparable to Macbeth’s guilt at the start of the play as they both exhibit hyperbole in relation to blood. We have Lady Macbeths “perfumes of Arabia will not sweeten this little hand” directly comparable to Macbeth’s “Great Neptune’s Ocean”.
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izzy-stones
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Not sure exactly what mark but I'd give it around the 13-15 mark. I'm not sure how your exact exam board grades but for me, personally, there are too many ideas that aren't explored in great detail. Whilst there are a lot of quotes used, there is barely any analysis of them. I'm not sure if you need context as well as AO1, AO2 etc but if you do then it isn't used here. Whilst this is a really good start of an essay, to strengthen it I'd pick out a few ideas, maybe 2 or 3, and develop those into large paragraphs instead of a lot of paragraphs that are a few lines.
This being said, I'm not sure exactly how Edexcel grades (assuming this is GCSE because of Macbeth) because I did IGCSE Edexcel and I do A Level Edexcel now so it could be a lot different. I'd recommend asking your teacher to mark this if they can.
Your intro is really good, keep it short and simple - I'd recommend finishing the intro by saying "In this essay I will be demonstrating how guilt is present in Macbeth through ..."
If you do decide to redo this essay I'd really look forward to seeing the improvements you make because it seems like you really do understand the play and the use of literary terms but it just needs to be developed more. Really well done though!!
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h1miah
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(Original post by izzy-stones)
Not sure exactly what mark but I'd give it around the 13-15 mark. I'm not sure how your exact exam board grades but for me, personally, there are too many ideas that aren't explored in great detail. Whilst there are a lot of quotes used, there is barely any analysis of them. I'm not sure if you need context as well as AO1, AO2 etc but if you do then it isn't used here. Whilst this is a really good start of an essay, to strengthen it I'd pick out a few ideas, maybe 2 or 3, and develop those into large paragraphs instead of a lot of paragraphs that are a few lines.
This being said, I'm not sure exactly how Edexcel grades (assuming this is GCSE because of Macbeth) because I did IGCSE Edexcel and I do A Level Edexcel now so it could be a lot different. I'd recommend asking your teacher to mark this if they can.
Your intro is really good, keep it short and simple - I'd recommend finishing the intro by saying "In this essay I will be demonstrating how guilt is present in Macbeth through ..."
If you do decide to redo this essay I'd really look forward to seeing the improvements you make because it seems like you really do understand the play and the use of literary terms but it just needs to be developed more. Really well done though!!
I have to write an essay on theme of death in Macbeth. What could I talk about ?
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izzy-stones
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(Original post by h1miah)
I have to write an essay on theme of death in Macbeth. What could I talk about ?
Instead of taking it at face value and saying something like "Death is shown through Duncan" where you are only focusing on a person, write about a larger idea. By this I mean it might be worth talking about how "Death is shown as a cyclical nature" and you can then further explain how once Macbeth kills Duncan, he has to frame the two guards and get them killed as well (at least I think they die, it's been two years since I've done Macbeth ahah). By doing this, you aren't merely saying that death is shown through Duncan being killed, you are expanding it to say that it is something that causes more death in one way or another. This isn't a great point because I think this is actually a hard question and I can't think of anything that would be really good.
Another point could be how death and the hunger for power that is present in the play are linked. A good example of this is Lady Macbeth and it ties into the idea of death being cyclical. Lady Macbeth starts out as being very subservient and allows her husband to shine, but as soon as she has a chance to be the queen she doesn't pass up the opportunity and forces her husband to commit regicide. As this develops further, the power trip changes and Macbeth becomes the power-hungry one and Lady Macbeth becomes the paranoid one, causing Lady Macbeth's death and then Macbeth dies so it just shows how the hunger for power will kill people, whether others or themselves.
A final point could be about how fate causes death. Idk this is just a short thing I can think of and you could write about how everyone who heard their fate died trying to pursue it. I can't really explain it further haha but it could be developed into a strong point hopefully
If you need advice on this or want me to look at it after then let me know! Good luck and don't forget to analyse quotes!
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h1miah
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(Original post by izzy-stones)
Instead of taking it at face value and saying something like "Death is shown through Duncan" where you are only focusing on a person, write about a larger idea. By this I mean it might be worth talking about how "Death is shown as a cyclical nature" and you can then further explain how once Macbeth kills Duncan, he has to frame the two guards and get them killed as well (at least I think they die, it's been two years since I've done Macbeth ahah). By doing this, you aren't merely saying that death is shown through Duncan being killed, you are expanding it to say that it is something that causes more death in one way or another. This isn't a great point because I think this is actually a hard question and I can't think of anything that would be really good.
Another point could be how death and the hunger for power that is present in the play are linked. A good example of this is Lady Macbeth and it ties into the idea of death being cyclical. Lady Macbeth starts out as being very subservient and allows her husband to shine, but as soon as she has a chance to be the queen she doesn't pass up the opportunity and forces her husband to commit regicide. As this develops further, the power trip changes and Macbeth becomes the power-hungry one and Lady Macbeth becomes the paranoid one, causing Lady Macbeth's death and then Macbeth dies so it just shows how the hunger for power will kill people, whether others or themselves.
A final point could be about how fate causes death. Idk this is just a short thing I can think of and you could write about how everyone who heard their fate died trying to pursue it. I can't really explain it further haha but it could be developed into a strong point hopefully
If you need advice on this or want me to look at it after then let me know! Good luck and don't forget to analyse quotes!
Thank you so much, my teacher said I could talk about the theme of evil as well and death. Also could I link the theme of violence with the theme of death?
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izzy-stones
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(Original post by h1miah)
Thank you so much, my teacher said I could talk about the theme of evil as well and death. Also could I link the theme of violence with the theme of death?
Absolutely! Realistically you could link love with death if you were persuasive enough. You just need to be able to argue your point to be able to get the marks, that’s all I’ve learnt from doing English Lit. Violence seems like a really good point to link death to
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